Nov 14, 2012, 12:41 PM EDT
Wayne Simmonds‘ time in Europe has come to an abrupt end.
On Wednesday, Czech Extraliga club Liberec announced Simmonds and St. Louis Blues forward Chris Stewart had left the team — departures that, related or not, coincided with the arrest of eight fans alleged to have made racial taunts towards Simmonds during a Oct. 28 game between Liberec and Chomutov.
News of Stewart leaving the club actually broke yesterday, when it was announced he’d be rejoining German league team Crimmitschau, which he left in October to join to Liberec.
Simmonds’ departure seemed to catch the Czech club by surprise. That’s the impression one gets from a statement released by Liberec GM Ctibora Jecha (WARNING: Sketchy Google translate ahead.)
The end of the engagement Wayne Simmonds and Chris Stewart, we did not expect. Their course of action was very substandard and also in view of the fact that both had an interview a few days ago with a new head coach Philip Pesanem with which discussed the current situation and their future with the White Tigers.
We also meet their wishes not to go with us to match European Trophy in Bern, with regard to new negotiations in the NHL. This unilateral decision by the two players, came at a time when the whole production team traveled to Switzerland for a game with the players, there was no negotiation or consultation. Their decision was communicated to us by telephone through an agent…
…The player [Simmonds] told us that is some serious family reasons forced to immediately return home to Canada, and thus end their engagement in Liberec.
In the case of the continuation of the NHL lockout is not excluded by Simmonds return to Liberec in the Czech Republic has ever had a valid contract. This option but does not seem too likely.
As for the eight Chomutov fans facing trial for “misdemeanor disorderly conduct and defamation,” here’s Greg Wyshynski of Puck Daddy:
They face a hearing on Jan. 9, 2013, in Chomutov District Court and could be sentenced to a maximum of three years in prison.
The Czech site [iDNES.cz] reports that the rowdy fans calls themselves the “Black Commandos”, attending games in a black hooded sweatshirt and scarf, imbibing a considerable amount of booze before games.
(One of the accused fans, Radek Pribyl, said he had 10 beers and two shots but was only “mildly drunk” because he’s “trained” for that level of consumption.)
Some of the fans claim they joined the “monkey” chants but didn’t start them; others claim they didn’t join them at all.
It should be noted that, last week, Simmonds told Yahoo’s Nick Cotsonika he didn’t plan on letting the racist taunts affect him.
“I’ve enjoyed myself since I’ve been in Europe, and I intend to keep enjoying myself,” he explained. “That’s definitely not going to keep me down. I can tell you that.”
UPDATE: For more context on the situation, here’s Cotsonika…
On Simmonds, Stewart: In addition to the incident, they caught Liberec at a bad time. Team struggled. Coach resigned. A lot going on.
— Nick Cotsonika (@cotsonika) November 14, 2012
May 25, 2015, 12:00 AM EDT
Two sides to the coin in a shutout.
May 24, 2015, 10:33 PM EDT
Bolts take a 3-2 series to Tampa Bay.
May 24, 2015, 9:36 PM EDT
The Lightning are 7-0 when scoring the first goal in the playoffs.
May 24, 2015, 9:17 PM EDT
Degree of difficulty: high.
May 24, 2015, 9:15 PM EDT
Blocking shots can be a grind, too, after all.
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May 24, 2015, 7:37 PM EDT
No clarification on what would qualify as “dramatic.”
May 24, 2015, 6:52 PM EDT
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May 24, 2015, 5:58 PM EDT
Can Anaheim grind this series out?
May 24, 2015, 4:45 PM EDT
Things weren’t a “perfect fit” for the blue liner in Nashville.
May 24, 2015, 3:45 PM EDT
He coached Edmonton to a 17-25-9 record after Dallas Eakins was fired in December.
May 24, 2015, 2:45 PM EDT
He’s gone nine games without a point.
May 24, 2015, 1:45 PM EDT
He has not played since April 24.
May 24, 2015, 1:00 PM EDT
He’s set to become an unrestricted free agent in July.
May 24, 2015, 12:30 PM EDT
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May 24, 2015, 11:41 AM EDT
He owes St. Louis one more season.
May 24, 2015, 10:46 AM EDT
He has not coached since being fired by the Penguins last June.
May 24, 2015, 2:05 AM EDT
“Finally got a bounce.”
May 24, 2015, 12:52 AM EDT
Chicago wins another long overtime game.
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